Ammunition
minimum required calibers for hunting in south africa

After years of confusion about the minimum required calibers for hunting in South Africa, the government recently issued a whole new set of rules that is easy to follow and control.

The previous rules were based solely on caliber rather than bullet weight, and differed from one province to another. The new rules are based entirely on bullet weight. The law that stipulates the new rules, was signed by South Africa's minister for environment, Bomo Molewa, and was publicised in the Government Gazette 27th May 2011 under the heading "Norms and Standards for Hunting Methods in South Africa".

The new rules for minimum required calibers are as follows:

A.
2.3 g. (35 gr.) bullet for furred game up to and including the size of rock hyrax and all rodents; and feathered game.

B.
3.3 g. (50 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under A, up to and including the size of springbok and mountain reedbuck.

C.
6.6 g. (100 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under B, up to and including the size of impala, warthog, blesbuck, common reedbuck and nyala ewes.

D.
8.4 g. (130 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under C, up to and including the size of black wildebeest, tsessebe, nyala bulls and hartebeest.

E.
9.9 g. (150 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under D, up to and including the size of blue wildebeest, kudu, gemsbok (oryx), sable, roan and leopard.

F.
11 g. (175 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under E, up to and Including eland, but excluding lion and buffalo.

G.
16.2 g. (250 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under F, up to and including lion, buffalo and giraffe.

H.
19.5 g. (300 gr.) bullet for furred game larger than the species mentioned under G, including thick-skinned animals (elephant, rhino and hippopotamus).

When hunting thick-skinned animals, the bullet must be of full metal jacket or monolithic solid construction.

(As can be seen, some of the conversions between gram and grains are not quite correct, but this is how it is written in the law.)